I blinked, and 2019 is nearly over. It was a truly fascinating year in my life, a test of a year, and it kept my brain and my heart very busy. One of my resolutions going into this year was to focus more on gratitude, and I’m happy to say, mission accomplished. By choosing every day to acknowledge how grateful I am for the things I have, the things I’ve done, and the people in my life, it has been a forward-facing, positive year.
Even so, just for the moment, I’m going to turn around and face the other way. I think it’s good for me to occasionally pause and look back and see how far I’ve climbed rather than only looking ahead at how much farther I have to go.
Here is what 2019 was for me in the world of writing:
- My second poetry collection, I Wrote You a Poem, came out in January.
- I opened my Etsy shop in January, filled with signed poetry collections and products based around my poetry.
- I attended Maggie Stiefvater’s Portraits & Dreams seminar in Seattle in February alongside my writing partner and, as always when Maggie is the presenter, learned so much about the craft.
- The conclusion of my duology, A Dream Within a Dream, was released in March! I am so proud of that book, and I have missed Reeve, Bran, and Arden terribly in the months since.
- I won #RevPit in April and worked alongside editor extraordinaire Holly Ingraham for six weeks to revise Heartfire until it shone.
- My third poetry collection, Anyway, I Reach, came out in July.
- I also signed with my agent, the wonderful Kaitlyn Johnson, in July, and together we revised Heartfire until it shone even more.
- Heartfire went out on submission in October! It is so exciting and nerve-wracking to be at this stage with a book that holds so much of my heart(fire).
- My fourth poetry collection (what is wrong with me), Something Softer, came out in December.
- I finished drafting Then I Defy You, Stars, my fifth novel, in December.
In the midst of it all, I wrote hundreds (and hundreds) of poems, quintupled my Instagram following, attended local author events, read 19 books, and kept on dreaming big.
For 2020, I have both hopes and goals. The hopes include things that are not technically within my control, such as finding a publisher home for Heartfire so that it can someday be out in the world. The goals include revising Then I Defy You, Stars, writing another novel, and going on at least one writing retreat.
And, also, continued gratitude, positivity, and reflection.
I have a really, really good feeling about next year.
“And now let us believe in a long year that is given to us, new, untouched, full of things that have never been, full of work that has never been done, full of tasks, claims, and demands; and let us see that we learn to take it without letting fall too much of what it has to bestow upon those who demand of it necessary, serious, and great things.”
– Rainer Maria Rilke –